What are the coronavirus rules in the four UK nations?

Northern Ireland’s Health Minister Robin Swann confirmed on Monday that he will make an order revoking the remaining rules.

15 February 2022

Coronavirus legal restrictions are being lifted in Northern Ireland and replaced with guidance.

Health Minister Robin Swann confirmed on Monday that he would make an order revoking the remaining rules on Tuesday.

But what are the current rules or guidance in all the nations of the UK?

– Northern Ireland

 Robin Swann
Northern Ireland Health Minister Robin Swann (Liam McBurney/PA)

Under the Covid-19 regulations, people were still required to wear face coverings in public places and Covid certificates were needed for nightclubs.

Hospitality and entertainment venues will still be encouraged to use the Covid certificates but it will no longer be legally required.

The regulations in Northern Ireland were not due to expire until March 24, but had been reviewed by the executive every three weeks.

However, Northern Ireland has no functioning executive after the DUP removed Paul Givan as first minister.

Requirements for risk assessments in work places for social distancing will also be scrapped, with it now also being guidance.

Self-isolating and testing guidance currently remains the same.

– Scotland

 Nicola Sturgeon
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon delivering a Covid-19 update at the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh (Fraser Bremner/Daily Mail/PA)

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said she will publish a new strategic framework for dealing with Covid-19 on February 22.

Currently pupils and teachers in secondary schools in Scotland must wear face coverings in classrooms, however this requirement will be removed on February 28.

Face coverings will still be required in other communal, indoor areas within high schools, but this will be kept under “regular review”.

They are still required in all indoor public spaces for people aged 12 and over, including public transport and shops.

Covid certificates meanwhile remain in place in certain places and businesses, service providers and places of worship must adhere to guidance.

The Scottish Government is also moving to extend its Covid powers until September 24.

The requirements will next be reviewed on February 22.

– Wales

Vaughan Gething
Wales’s Minister for Health and Social Services Vaughan Gething (Ben Birchall/PA)

Wales is currently at Alert Level 0, meaning there are no legal limits on the number of people who can meet, including in private homes, public places or at events. All businesses and premises are also open.

Covid passes for indoor and outdoor venues are due to be scrapped on February 18, and the requirement to wear face coverings in certain venues is ending 10 days later on February 28.

– England

Boris Johnson tour of UK
Prime Minister Boris Johnson (Jeff J Mitchell/PA)

Last week, Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the remaining domestic coronavirus restrictions in England – including the legal requirement to self-isolate – could be lifted within weeks.

He is due to present his plan for “living with Covid” when Parliament returns from a short recess on February 21, with an aim of lifting the requirement to self-isolate within days of that.

The current self-isolation regulations, which include self-isolating for 10 days unless you have a negative lateral flow test on days five and six, expire on March 24.

No other UK nations have said they will follow England with dropping self-isolation rules, with Wales stating explicitly it will not change its rules.

Face masks and Covid passes are no longer required in England.

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